Convalescence, in brief--and a 'Twilight' review.

As I sit here at 5:15 am, drinking coffee and eating Raisin Bran, this is pretty much the first time in 2 weeks I've felt like myself. A head cold turned into bronchitis, then back into a severe head cold. I had fever & chills 3 out of 4 days last week. Finally, the doctor prescribed a course of antibiotics and two days later I couldn't hear out of my right ear.

Fun times.

So, Dr. Whitney prescribed strict rest--don't do anything unessential. Weld my butt to the couch, drink lots of fluids, stay warm--all good advice. Nearly drove me batty, but at least we started a RedBox-fueled movie marathon. Reviews below:

Bolt: Amazing this pointless, self-important, slow 3-D animation came out of the same people who brought us The Incredibles. It's a very small movie, essentially a rip-off of Homeward Bound, starring vocal talents (!) of John Travolta and Miley Cyrus. Like the title character in "The Truman Show", bolt is a TV superstar who has no idea he's on TV--he believes he really is a superdog responsible for loving and saving his person, Penny, from the evil Calico. To boost ratings, the producers decide to kidnap Penny, and Bolt strikes out to find her, getting himself shipped across the country from LA to NYC in the process. What follows is a standard 'road story' plot that gets more and more tiresome & predictable. Overall, a waste of time.

Get Smart (2008). This was a delightful comedy with great performances out of Steve Carell, Anne Hathaway, and Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. Like the 1965 series its based on, it stars Maxwell Smart, the hapless (yet not hopeless) secret agent who bumbles his way into saving the day assissting Agent 99. Anne Hathaway NAILS Agent 99. Watch this film!

The Women. This movie has two hingepoints: First, It has no men onscreen ("The WOMEN, get it?"). Second, it stars EVERY ACRESS IN HOLLYWOOD OVER 40. And Eva Mendes as the prefume counter whore trying to steal Meg Ryan's husband. Like Sex in the City, it's an interesting snapshot into the female mind, but beyond that, it's a draggy tale about meg ryan's character overcoming her goody two-shoes image to become a fully realized woman. Or Meg Ryan herself doing that...

Burn After Reading. One of the most pointless, profane, pointless, cold films I've ever seen. I mean, SERIOUSLY Coen Brothers? Did we need 2 hours to reinforce the Nihilistic world view that people have no point? I mean, it's just NOT THAT FUNNY...

* * *

Twilight: Yeah, we wrapped it up Sunday from 9:30 to 11:30 watching the phenomenon known as Twilight. Maybe every vampire movie requires slow-motion, self-importance, and a sepia filter, but Whitney and I were looking for the exit by about 15 minutes in.

I mean, I see the attraction--the heroine, Bella Swan, is the perfection of an angsty-yet-functional brunette (no blondes need apply!). Bella exhibits none of the Afterschool Special issues--she doesn't drink, smoke, do drugs, have an eating disorder, and she appears to be virginal. Yet, she's not a spaz and she's instantly the shinest new thing in the town of Forks, Washington, where it's sunny one day every other year.

In all of that, enter the Cullen family, the attractive yet vegetarian Vampires, who live in the Frank Loyd Wright house just up the hill there. The only unattached one, Edward, catches Bella's eye, and she fixates on him, sloughing-off the other overeager boys at Forks High with ease. Edward seems to want to eat her whole, yet he refuses to touch her or otherwise lower his guard.

Oh he MUST like her. Or he's a recovering serial killer. Depends which movie you're watching.

Thankfully, only 1:10 in, the plot starts moving when Edward deflects a van from hitting Bella broadside and cutting short the forthcoming book trilogy. Following that, they become an item and a running commercial for the DOA hatchback Volvo C30. Yeah, get a good look at Edward's car--you'll never see one in real life.

Anyway, the last 45 minutes or so of the movie is fairly worthy, turing into a more-and-more implausible chase movie with a certain Silence of the Lambs flair thanks to a psychotic killer Vampire names James. Lives are in danger, tension rises (or, ARRIVES at least), and the vast cast of characters finally has something to do besides stand around and brood.

Yeah, call me silly, but I'd take a couple of episodes of Buffy over this 'phenomenon' any day. But, I'm a Joss Whedon fanboi (right down to 'Dollhouse'), so sue me.

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